How do you conduct live software training workshops properly

Subject: How do you conduct live software training workshops properly
From: "Daniel Ng" <kjng -at- gprotechnologies -dot- com>
To: <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 22 Sep 2008 18:32:27 +0800

*This message was transferred with a trial version of CommuniGate(r) Pro*
I've been doing software training workshops on my own, watching our
technical developers do it and within our department with classes ranging
from youths(last weekned) to working professionals(in my job and for my
professional work). I am not trained formally in training software, although
I am in a position tell others how do it.

The most I have experienced that seemed to get it right was a free Microsoft
Sharepoint/Small Business Server installation workshop I attended a few
months ago: Preconfigured laptops, virtual machine images, training guide
for the actual detailed step by step, and a trainer that walks around and
talks about concepts in the first 5 minutes only.

In my relatively short experience, but its been a challenge trying to get
everyone following instructions together (be it 2-3 people) or a class of 15
energetic youths with laptops. I try to keep the sessions short enough 30
-45 minutes to retain attention but even within 15 minutes its hard to keep
everyone moving together from installation problems to getting the class to
click the right things.

How is this actually done in a proper manner. Most importantly, IMHO, is
that my students walk away with a sense of having learnt something and not
being bored adjusting to slower students...

Last weekend, tasked with showing slide projection software to youths, I put
my heart in. I created a 16 page booklet that outlined the objectives,
screenshots, steps and key points of the things I was teaching to the

Mistake#1, text in the booklet too time print bigger.

I even included screencasts of key steps and provided all the necessary
software, numbered and labelled, with additional electronic pDF of notes.The
booklet had lots of screenshots (and a comic drawn in Visio 2003 in the
front and back) with the objective to make it appealing, so it wasn't
written as a showcase for technical writing with an emphasis on lots of

In essence, I was so exhausted preparing what was planned to be 55 minutes,
of which I think the booklet was hardly used, the students(youths) wandered,
though we did achieve the objectives 80% of it.

How do you do it, to keep the class in order and in pace?
Or should I just use an exploratory method, give a training guide, and the
role of a trainer is just to facilitate following the instructions on paper.

Or to demonstrate live on a projector in one fell swoop, and then get them
to repeat much later on...then do a gate review...

Interested to discover what the list has to say...


ComponentOne Doc-To-Help gives you everything you need to author and
publish quality Help, Web, and print content. Perfect for technical
authors, developers, and policy writers. Download a FREE trial.

True single source, conditional content, PDF export, modular help.
Help & Manual is the most powerful authoring tool for technical
documentation. Boost your productivity!

You are currently subscribed to TECHWR-L as archive -at- web -dot- techwr-l -dot- com -dot-

To unsubscribe send a blank email to
techwr-l-unsubscribe -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
or visit

To subscribe, send a blank email to techwr-l-join -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com

Send administrative questions to admin -at- techwr-l -dot- com -dot- Visit for more resources and info.


Previous by Author: RE: free Flare & Blaze webinars for my students
Next by Author: RE: How do you conduct live software training workshops properly
Previous by Thread: Re: Searching Text Files
Next by Thread: Re: How do you conduct live software training workshops properly

What this post helpful? Share it with friends and colleagues:

Sponsored Ads